Vol. 5, No. 10
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For over two centuries, our nation has professed to have been established and to have been preserved by the providence of God. The citizens of the United States of America have long claimed to comprise a Christian nation. How, then, could our beloved country legalize homosexual marriages in direct contradiction to what God's Word (the Bible) teaches about homosexuality? Yet, that is precisely what has transpired in America. A recent case in point is the judicial decision by the Supreme Court of Massachusetts when in November 2003 it ruled that barring same sex marriages was unconstitutional. How could it happen?
Another recent episode in American current events respecting endorsement of homosexuality was the promotion to Bishop in the America Episcopal or Anglican Church of an openly avowed homosexual on November 2, 2003. The elevation of V. Gene Robinson to Bishop of Episcopal Church USA is threatening to split that church in America and further cause that denominational body to run amok with its European counterpart, as well as with its denominational and Catholic correspondents. One would think that a professedly Christian religion would have enough respect for God's Word not to endorse precisely the things that the Bible condemns. How could it happen?
Though there are many biblical passages that condemn homosexuality as sinful, notice the following sample of such references, before we direct our attention in this article otherwise. "Do you not know that the unrighteous will not inherit the kingdom of God? Do not be deceived. Neither fornicators, nor idolaters, nor adulterers, nor homosexuals, nor sodomites, nor thieves, nor covetous, nor drunkards, nor revilers, nor extortioners will inherit the kingdom of God" (1 Corinthians 6:9-11, NKJV). Read also Romans 1:18-32 for an unmistakable, divine condemnation of homosexuality. Oddly, though, some brazen souls have the unabashed and shameless audacity to rationalize that neither God nor his Holy Word is the least offended by homosexuality. How could it happen?
Really, it is of little wonder that both our nation and prominent, so-called Christian denominations have come to the point of open endorsement of homosexuality, though God sternly condemns it. After all, both our nation and the denominational world have long ago exchanged loyalty to God and his Word (the Bible) for human preferences. The very existence of denominations attests to man's inclination to do things in religion his way instead of God's way. If every church accepted the Bible only as its only religious creed, denominationalism would not exist in the first place! How could it happen?
Typically, denominations have adopted names unheard of in the Bible, organized themselves in ways not described in the Bible, perverted the New Testament pattern for pure worship and substituted human plans of redemption for the only one that really saves from sin, and about which anyone can read in the New Testament (especially in the Book of Acts). Mankind's willingness to ignore the Word of God (the Bible) in these and other areas reveals the defective attitude toward religion that ultimately will see humans (and the denominations they have established) do anything they want to do, even if God directly condemns such activities. How could it happen?
In principle, though many sincere religious people still abhor such sins as homosexuality, they have laid the groundwork already for a departure from the Word of God to that degree, by the other departures from biblical truth they have embraced. Like a boat cut from its moorings and drifting aimlessly, once anyone or any church cuts its biblical moorings, it, too, will drift aimlessly in a sea of sin without restraint. When a boat, a person or a church begins to drift without restraint, there is no stopping place or no telling how far it will go!
God intended the Word of God (the Bible) to be his instruction to mankind, not merely divine suggestions. God, our Creator, never left man, his creation, without sufficient instruction, respectively, under Patriarchy, Judaism and Christianity. God caused the prophet to write, "O LORD, I know that the way of man is not in himself: it is not in man that walketh to direct his steps" (Jeremiah 10:23, KJV). The man or the church that rejects divine authority will not worship God as he has directed, will not adhere to the divine plan for saving mankind from sin or do many things according to God's Word, the Bible. How could it happen?
The churches of Christ (Romans 16:16) stringently hold to biblical authority and acknowledge the New Testament alone as their creed. Consequently, we have not embraced tolerance toward homosexuality (or any other activity condemned in the Bible as sinful). We attempt to worship God in simplicity, imitating the worship of the church of God in the first century, about which one can read in the New Testament. We practice congregational organization like the apostles organized the congregations of the first century, when fully organized, with ministers, elders, deacons, teachers and other members. We teach biblical doctrines and purposely refrain from manmade denominational doctrines; for instance, we teach what the New Testament teaches about salvation, no more and no less. Notice some of what the New Testament teaches about man's participation in his own salvation (Philippians 2:12).
So then faith comes by hearing, and hearing by the word of God (Romans 10:17, NKJV).
that if you confess with your mouth the Lord Jesus and believe in your heart that God has raised Him from the dead, you will be saved. For with the heart one believes unto righteousness, and with the mouth confession is made unto salvation (Romans 10:9-10).
He who believes and is baptized will be saved; but he who does not believe will be condemned (Mark 16:16).
...Repent, and let every one of you be baptized in the name of Jesus Christ for the remission of sins... (Acts 2:38).
...Be faithful until death, and I will give you the crown of life (Revelation 2:10).
How could it happen that our nation and one or more denominations have endorsed homosexuality? How could it happen that people and congregations of people have disregarded the Word of God respecting the names by which they are known, their worship, their organization and what they teach or practice regarding salvation? Indeed, how could it happen? It is just a matter of degrees in departing from God and his Holy Bible!
Therefore "Come out from among them And be separate, says the Lord. Do not touch what is unclean, And I will receive you. I will be a Father to you, And you shall be My sons and daughters, Says the LORD Almighty" (2 Cor 6:17-18).